Saturday, January 8, 2011

Cajun Chicken Pasta

My favourite pair of jeans have a hole in them in an area which makes them unwearable. Maybe it's a sign that I need to stop indulging in the boxes of chocolate, the tub of peppermint bark, and the couple of pounds of fudge that sit in my fridge. Yes, I was most definitely spoiled this holiday season with tasty treats.

Am I one to believe in signs that require me to suppress my sweet tooth? Ehh...NAH! Instead, I decided to make this delicious Cajun Chicken Pasta, courtesy of The Pioneer Woman.

Now, I'll have you know: following a recipe to a tee is really challenging for me. But this also means that if I were to make the same dish again, it would taste different every time because I don't keep track of exactly how much of a spice I'll put into the dish. It's why I'm excited to blog, because trying to keep track of how much I put in a dish will be challenging but helpful.

I didn't have any pre-made Cajun Spice Mix, however, I found this recipe and it turned out great. I did only put in one teaspoon of salt instead of two.

And of course, to add even more carb-age: some focaccia bread to complement the dish quite well!

Cajun Chicken Pasta
Courtesy of The Pioneer Woman


  • 3 whole Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts, Cut Into Cubes
  • 3 teaspoons Cajun Spice Mix, More To Taste
  • 1 pound Fettuccine
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1 whole Green Bell Pepper, Seeded And Sliced
  • 1 whole Red Bell Pepper, Seeded And Sliced
  • ½ whole Large Red Onion, Sliced
  • 3 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 4 whole Roma Tomatoes, Diced
  • 2 cups Low Sodium Chicken Broth
  • ½ cups White Wine
  • 1 cup Heavy Cream
  • Cayenne Pepper To Taste
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper, To Taste
  • Salt To Taste
  • Chopped Fresh Parsley, To Taste

Preparation Instructions

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain when pasta is still al dente; do not overcook!

Sprinkle 1 1/2 teaspoons Cajun spice over chicken piece (Anjali's note: I used 4 teaspoons here. Initially on accident, but it tasted great and I can't imagine it with anything less that 4tsp.). Toss around to coat. Heat 1 tablespoon oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a heavy skillet over high heat. Add half the chicken in a single layer; do not stir. Allow chicken to brown on one side, about 1 minute. Flip to the other side and cook an additional minute. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on a clean plate.

Repeat with remaining chicken. Remove chicken, leaving pan on high heat.

Add remaining olive oil and butter. When heated, add peppers, onions, and garlic. Sprinkle on remaining Cajun spice, and add salt if needed. Cook over very high heat for 1 minute, stirring gently and trying to get the vegetables as dark/black as possible. Add tomatoes and cook for an additional 30 seconds. Remove all vegetables from the pan.

With the pan over high heat, pour in the wine and chicken broth. Cook on high for 3 to 5 minutes, scraping the bottom of the pan to deglaze. Reduce heat to medium-low and pour in cream, stirring/whisking constantly. Cook sauce over medium-low heat for a few minutes, until cream starts to thicken the mixture. Taste and add freshly ground black pepper, cayenne pepper, and/or salt to taste. Sauce should be spicy!

Finally, add chicken and vegetables to sauce, making sure to include all the juices that have drained onto the plate. Stir and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, until mixture is bubbly and hot. Add drained fettuccine and toss to combine.

Top with chopped fresh parsley and chow down!

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